“Shooting Stars” is an annual new talent forum initiated by the European Film Promotion (EFP) in 1997 to assist talented young actors by introducing them to the international film scene. 30 countries are registered with the EFP, and each country can send one candidate each year. The only requirements are: one lead in a successful national movie, speaking English fluently and being under the age of 36.
The German candidate David Kross easily fulfils all three conditions. He has just turned 18, has played a leading part in two remarkable German films, learning English for his role opposite Oscar-winner Kate Winslet in The Reader. Actually he has almost outgrown the Shooting Star concept which was meant to push open doors into the big wide movie world for talented young actors.
For one weekend during the Berlinale the spotlight shines on the ten European Shooting Stars selected by prominent international film professionals. In a whirlwind of events and activities European Film Promotion introduces the young performers to casting directors, the world’s media and renowned film personalities. A photo shooting session is followed by a Talent Campus Workshop with international directors such as Stephen Frears, Leo Davis, Ole Christian Madsen and Rie Hedegaard.
The weekend’s highlight is the glittering Shooting Stars Award Ceremony. The main sponsor Studio Babelsberg is donating ten statuettes of the famous Maria from Fritz Lang’s film Metropolis which was produced in the Babelsberg studios in 1927. At the After Award party the co-sponsor Tesiro is presenting each Shooting Star with a diamond-studded “Key to Success” as a souvenir of a glamorous weekend in the spotlight.
Keep an eye out for these Shooting Stars of the Year 2009 – the Stars of Tomorrow:
Alba Caterina Rohrwacher’s, (Italy) major film roles include: My Brother is an only Child, Days and Clouds (for which she won a David Donatello for best supporting actress), Good Morning Heartache and Giovanna’s Father. Her most recent films are I am Love and L’Uomo Che Verra.
Verónica Echegui (Spain) for her first major film role I am Juani. Verónica won many international awards. This led to roles in The Least of All Evils and My Father’s House, Prison Yard and Bunny & the Bull in 2008.
Samuli Vauramo’s (Finland) first starring role was in Beauty and The Bastard, for which he was nominated Best Actor at the Finnish Film Awards. Recently he performed the lead in Tears of April and has just completed work on Bunraku in the United States.
Carey Mulligan’s (United Kingdom) first film was Pride & Prejudice in 2005. Films to be released in 2009 are Brothers, The Greatest, Public Enemies and An Education, which had a Gala screening at the Berlinale Special.
Sarah Bolger’s (Ireland) first leading role was in the 2001 feature In America for which she received nominations for major international awards. Recent films include Tara Road, Stormbreaker and The Spiderwick Chronicles. She has just completed the television drama The Tudors as Princess Mary.
Cyron Melville (Denmark) with many films under his belt, Cyron’s most recent starring roles include Fighter and Daniel (working title) to be premiered 2009.
Celine Bolmey’s (Switzerland) many lead roles in film include On Dirait le Sud (Swiss Film Prize 2002) and The Noise in my Head.
Hafsia Herzi (France) won the César for the Most Promising Actress 2008 for her first role in The Secret of the Grain. Other films include Le Roi de L’ Évasion and Anonymes that she just finished shooting.
David Kross (Germany) has gone on to star in many films including Krabat as well as the critically acclaimed The Reader which has been screened Out of Competition at the Berlinale. He has recently finished working on Detlev Buck’s film Same Same But Different.
There is a good chance that you might read one of these names on big film posters in future. Today, former Shooting Stars like Daniel Craig (2000), Rachel Weisz and Jürgen Vogel (both 1998) are among the big names working on international productions.